Manchester United’s Ashley Young has revealed that the England players have discussed how to deal with any racism they might be subjected to in the World Cup next month.
Russia has a huge problem with racism and was only recently fined £22,000 for racist abuse aimed at French players in a friendly game in March.
Speaking about what the players would do should they become the target of racist abuse, Young said:
“When we’re on the pitch I’m not sure how you would react to it,”
“We’ll talk about it, and we have talked about it, in the squad – what to do and what not to do.”
“Hopefully FIFA, if anything is to come about, will be able to deal with it.”
In the friendly against France, which was played at the Krestovsky Stadium in St Petersburg, Manchester United’s Paul Pogba and Chelsea’s N’Golo Kante were just a few of the players reported to have been abused, which is almost certainly accurate or the pathetically low fine on the Russian Federation would not have been imposed.
FIFA claims it will take a zero tolerance approach to racism, but if their fines are anything to go by then it is nothing more than lip service.
It is incredible that a nation with such an appalling record on racism was chosen to host a World Cup tournament, but what is done is done, and one can only hope that FIFA does a far better job in dealing with the abuse than it has done previously.
You can take it to the bank that players will be targeted, especially if they are playing against Russia, and it is very likely that racism from the Russian fans will play a significant part in this World Cup.